Suspected drunken driver accused in fatal wrong-way crash denies - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Suspected drunken driver accused in fatal wrong-way crash denies charges

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VISTA (CNS) - A driver accused of going the wrong way on Interstate 15 near Escondido while drunk and out on bail in another DUI case, causing a fatal collision that killed a motorcyclist, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to gross vehicular manslaughter and other charges.

Brian Joseph Webb II -- who has DUI convictions from 2000 and 2007 -- was ordered held on $5 million bail.

Webb was driving his truck about 12:30 p.m. Saturday when he entered northbound I-15 the wrong way from the northbound Del Lago offramp and struck 60-year-old retired neurophysiologist Robin Vaughn's Harley-Davidson head-on, authorities said.

Vaughn, a father of five and grandfather of 15, died at the scene.

Superior Court Judge Marshall Hockett said that if anyone knew he shouldn't be drinking and driving, it was the 34-year-old defendant.

"This is an absolute senseless tragedy," the judge said.

Deputy District Attorney Kelly Mok said at the time of the crash, Webb was out of custody on bail after a July 5 arrest for allegedly driving under the influence.

Recently returned results from that arrest showed the defendant's blood-alcohol level at .30 percent, nearly four times the legal limit, Mok said.

Blood results from Saturday's fatal crash are still pending, the prosecutor said.

She added that Webb was also arrested June 22 for allegedly driving under the influence in Riverside County, and that case is under review, Mok said.

"We consider him an extreme danger to the community," the prosecutor said.

She said Webb was also considered a flight risk because he lives in Murrieta and has ties to South Carolina.

Webb, who faces 15 years to life in prison if convicted, is due back in court Aug. 21 for a readiness conference and Sept. 18 for a preliminary hearing.

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